A California teacher has been arrested after allegedly having sex with an underage student.
The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department announced last Friday that an arrest had been made amid their investigation into unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor — and the suspect in question troublingly turned out to be Yucaipa High School teacher Tracy Vanderhulst:
“On Thursday, May 18, 2023, detectives from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Specialized Investigations Division — Crimes Against Children Detail and the Yucaipa Station investigated allegations of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor by a teacher at Yucaipa High School. Detectives identified Yucaipa High School teacher, Tracy Vanderhulst, as the suspect.”
The teacher was taken into custody at around 11:00 p.m. that night, and booked into Central Detention Center in San Bernardino and held on $30,000 bail on suspicion of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor.
The 38-year-old allegedly had sex with a 16-year-old boy, though it is not clear if he is a student at the high school she teaches at. What’s even more troubling? The sheriff’s department “believes there may be additional victims.” Seriously?? SICK! She was trusted by adults to coach, grow, and impart knowledge onto their children, and this is what she allegedly does??
Up until suspicion was raised for her alleged acts, the math teacher was highly regarded within the school district. According to a YHS Facebook post, she was brought on in 2013, and was awarded “Teacher of the Year” four years later in 2017, according to KTLA-TV. In an article from News Mirror at the time that covered her win, the educator was written about with high esteem:
“[Vanderhulst] epitomizes the educator so many desire to be — she is the kind and innovative teacher from whom we hope our children will grow; the educator who strives to engage all of her students from her intervention classes to her honors classes.”
In a now-deleted Twitter post, the school said she “offers up a rigorous mathematics curriculum and deep caring for her students.”
How can someone who seems so right for their role go so terribly wrong?
As of now, it’s unclear if Vanderhulst has retained an attorney or entered a plea deal in her case, but the sheriff’s department is asking anyone with information to “contact Detective Rachel Young of the Specialized Investigations Division, Crimes Against Children Detail at (909) 890-4904. Callers wishing to remain anonymous may call the We-Tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or you may leave information on the We-Tip Hotline at www.wetip.com.”
What are YOUR thoughts on the case? Share in the comments down below.
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual abuse and would like to learn more about resources, consider checking out https://www.rainn.org/resources.
[Image via San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department]